of their land. By 1910, thousands were landless, and most were burdened with disease and poverty. Indian policy was not working and clearly needed reform.
The Society of American Indians represented a pan-Indian effort at popularizing the need for reform. The reform it called for was conservative and mainly legal. It advocated assimilation and the full rights of citizenship for Indians but called for continuation of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, though seriously reorganized. These views of needed reform were too conservative for people like Carlos Montezuma, whose Wassaja* aimed at abolishing the Indian Bureau, and for groups like the Mission Indian Federation in California. The differing viewpoints among Indians regarding the direction reforms should take are evident in The American Indian Magazine. These differences reflect growing Indian activism for reform. In a little more than a decade after the magazine ceased publication in 1920, the controversial reform Indian policy formulated by John Collier and others during the 1920s would become official and would initiate the Indian New Deal. Although the cultural pluralism advocated in Collier's policy was not what The American Indian Magazine sought, the magazine reflects the early stirrings of the reform effort among Indians and is a tangible expression of their determination to achieve it.
Index Sources: None